Is e-filing a better way to file your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree about everything, but they’re mostly on the same page in regards to e-filing individual income tax returns.
The majority of individual income tax returns submitted to the IRS are e-filed.
When you e-file your federal income tax return, you save the IRS cash because its employees don’t need to spend time manually processing your return. And in return, you could get any refund you are owed quicker, especially if you have it directly deposited into your bank accounts.
However, what about safety? And can digital filing actually give you access to all the forms you may need in case you have a intricate tax situation? Are there ever situations when you can’t e-file? Let us look at the advantages of e-filing, and if it might be the best filing choice for your requirements.
If you are Considering e-filing, a Few of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms are obtained: The IRS will affirm a tax filing has been received within 24 hours of electronic submission. For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived safely.
Timely refunds: When you publish a paper filing, it may take six to eight weeks to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to get your money in three weeks or not. Choosing direct deposit may also speed up the refund procedure.
Reduced likelihood of errors: In accordance with the IRS, there is around a 1 percent error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% speed of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more information on issues discovered on e-filed returns compared with paper returns.
Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s simpler to cover at your advantage when you e-file. You can submit returns early and pay afterwards if needed, as long as you pay from the April 15 filing deadline. You also have the choice to pay your balance by using the IRS Immediate pay service from your checking account or savings accounts, submitting a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order.
Digital storage of taxation data: Submitting returns electronically implies there’s an electronic backup of your tax records. So if something happens to your paperwork, you will have an electronic backup.
The fantastic news: Most taxpayers do decide to e-file and get those advantages — and the practice of doing this is easy.
- Use IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or less you may be able to use the IRS Free File program. The types do the math for you and offer basic guidance. You can simply do your federal return with all these forms.
- Utilize an online tax preparation tax or service software: Tax prep software and online filing services are alternatives. These options are an easy way to finish and e-file your own forms. Some applications providers charge for their apps, Some are liberated. The program asks you simple questions about your life and financing to steer you through the completion of your types.
- Get complimentary, in-person tax help: In most states, you will find volunteers to help prepare and e-file yields. However, eligibility for free help is normally restricted based on earnings, and a few providers cater to specific demographic groups. By way of example, Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs focus primarily on helping filers who are 60 and older.
- Hire a paid preparer: Paid tax preparers, such as CPAs, can e-file returns for you if they’re authorized IRS e-file providers. The IRS maintains a database of authorized providers, but you should be aware this option is very likely to be the most costly one.
Using online tax prep software is far and away the favored approach of the majority of taxpayers. Actually, the IRS says it expected more than four tax returns to be submitted through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really secure?
While e-filing is suitable, you could worry about safety — especially with all these data breaches. But experts agree this isn’t an issue which should dissuade you from e-filing.
“E-filing a tax return has proven to be a very secure way to file your taxes,” states Scott Grissom, vice president of product direction, marketing and revenue at LegalShield. “In actuality, it can be more secure than paper filing since you’re sending your personal information through an encrypted network as opposed to exposing your information in the email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, explains the IRS has set security measures in place to keep your information secure. “Vendors typically utilize IRS specific APIs that require token sessions,” Chow says. “All of this can be routed over TLS encrypted links .”
It is important to employ a trustworthy service that will assist you file your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a computer or use an internet connection that isn’t private.
For most taxpayers, it is sensible to e-file a return because it is the most convenient way to submit your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment choices. Just make certain to use tax planning software from a trusted source, so you can ensure the information you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.